Using Technology to Advance Human Rights in Kenya

By Catherine Kamatu |

Joseph Kitaka, a resident of Yatta in Machakos County, Kenya, has always had an interest in defending human rights. His community is faced with numerous challenges, including gender-based violence, police brutality and many other human rights violations. Mr. Kitaka had little hope of utilising Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to advance his ambition in bettering his community, until he was elected the chairman of Yatta Paralegal Network, a local Human Rights Network (HURINET). Continue Reading →

The State of the Use of ICTs in Governance in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania

Edited by Nanjira Sambuli & Varyanne Sika |

Late last year, I accompanied the Executive Director of Mzalendo when she went to deliver awards to some of the winners of Shujaaz Awards. The awards were part of an undertaking that recognized efforts by Members of Parliament whose activities in the House had the biggest positive impact on the Common Mwananchi. The winners were chosen via public voting that was conducted through Twitter. Continue Reading →

Kyegegwa Boss Commends CSOs for Educating Locals

By Felix Basiime and Francis Tusiime |

The Kyegegwa District chairman, Mr Norman Birungi, has applauded civil society organisations (CSOs) for raising voters’ awareness on development programmes through public education. “The voters of 2016 are far different in thinking than those we had in 2006 and 2011. They are more aware than before because of the public dialogues we hold with them through the CSOs,” Mr Birungi told Saturday Monitor on Monday.

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Promoting Community Dialogue on Service Delivery Failures in Northern Uganda

By Gladys Oroma |

In 2014, the Collaboration on International Policy in East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) in partnership with the Northern Uganda Media Centre (NUMEC) launched a project to make Public Sector Information (PSI) more accessible and reusable by stakeholders such as citizens, civil society and the media in Northern Uganda. Continue Reading →

Political Leaders have not Provided Better Services for the Last Four Years They have been in Leadership

By ToroDev |

On 22 February 2015, members of Hakibale advocacy forum Mr. Atuhaire Johnand Mwanguhya Joseph together with members of PRIFODE from Mugusu Sub county panelists appeared on Better FM to the issues related to what leaders have done in terms proving better and improved services for the last four years they have been in leadership. Continue Reading →

Understanding Information Flows in the Education Sector in Mayuge, Uganda

By Juliet Nanfuka

A recently concluded Situational Analysis Report focusing on the Education Department in Mayuge District, Eastern Uganda, found that voids exist in the flow of information between citizens and leaders, leading to restricted participation in decision making processes.

The poor flow of information in the sector has contributed to poor service delivery and a negative attitude amongst some members of the community towards funding their children’s education. It was revealed that some citizens, including local leaders, did not know where to find information on education or had no way of reaching information points including the district headquarters. Reports of information hoarding had further strained the school-parent relationship, resulting in parents calling for more involvement in the management of schools.

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Acquiring Land in Uganda

On  14th/ Feb 2015  representatives from Land Department Kabarole District were hosted live on Hits Fm to comment, discuss and share issues related to land , the Panelists included Kugonza Simon Peter Surveyor officer and Mr Alinda Peter Senior land managing Officer both from Kabarole District.  some of the key issues they discussed included  during the live talkshow included: Do you think Ugandan know the right processes of acquiring and buying a land in Uganda? Do you know why and when you should survey your land? Do you know the land title deeds in Uganda?etc

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ToroDev M&E Team Continues Encouraging and Engaging Leaders of the 15 Advocacy Forums

Some of the leaders of advocacy forums

The  15 advocacy forums have been formed by the 120 rural monitors  trained by ToroDev in online advocacy, monitoring service delivery using online social media/ICT tools like Ushahidi platform for online documentation, visualization and mapping. The Advocacy Forums also use FM Radio Broadcasting as an ICT tool for “convergence or hub” since it is the most accessed media channel in the rural areas of the Rwenzori Region.

“During the physical and Skype  meetings and discussions ToroDev M&E team encourages  the leaders of the  15 advocacy forums  to embark on advocacy activities-monitoring service delivery, demanding accountability from local leaders and ensuring the participation of the marginalized groups such as women and youth.  The team also tasks forum members to implement ratio of 40% as women, 40% youth and 20% adults in our forum memberships and additional information on social accountability” Said Amanya Sheila M&E officer ToroDev.

Sheila adds that  as a team  we encourage and support citizen-citizen engagements/deliberations to assess priority service delivery and public accountability advocacy at sub-county levels in 7 district of Rwenzori regions, through the existing 15 Advocacy Forums and also through daily facebook discussion with Forums that have computers connected with Internet  and monthly phone calls the team tries  to verify whether the 15  forums are still active in monitoring services and advocating for better services, whether they conduct  monthly accountability meetings, whether they invite leaders for accountability meetings, whether youths  and  women attend  their meeting ( and the number of youth and women), whether they discuss issues  related to public accountability etc.

“We are always checked through phone- calls at-least twice a month by the team from ToroDev encouraging the leaders of the forums to continue using both physical meetings and ICT tools to advocate for improved service delivery and share the issues with the team both online and write a  report which is submitted at ToroDev Offices every month, this has kept us active in doing our work”. Said Muhindo Ezra,the leader of Katebwa Advocacy Forum, Kabarole District.
“As members of the advocacy forums we are always encouraged by ToroDev through phone calls, Skype, Face book discussions and physical meeting to keep using online/virtual platform for documentation and advocacy on people’s demands for improved service delivery in the seven districts of the Rwenzori region and participate on the Radio talk shows”. Said Rwaheru Gilbert the leader of Kichwamba people’and development Forum Kabarole  District.

As way of motivating, encouraging, strengthening and empowering the Advocacy forums and rural monitors, ToroDev’ M&E team  attends the monthly meetings organized by the advocacy forums  at the sub-county level, also twice in a month  the leaders of the forums are given a call t to check on the progress of their work, holds Skype meetings with leaders who were given Laptops, this is done  to assess the strengths, performance and weakness of the rural advocacy forums and rural monitors.